[TECHNICAL NOTE to the Internet Edition: Longer Writings (like this Preface) which might extend beyond one screenful of text will appear in multiple columns, as in an ancient scroll, and may be read by moving the text itself left or right. However, for readability's sake, lists and other apparati are displayed in a single column that moves up and down.]
Documents from the Archives Pertaining to Egderus Scriptor were first published by Eastgate Systems under the title We Descend, Volume One, rendered into hypertext form by Bill Bly, Curator. We Descend, Volume Two contains a selection of writings heretofore unpublished.
In another era, these writings might have appeared between the covers of a printed book; there the reader would find them organized by author, or by chronology, or according to some other schema. Each successive curator of the archives grouped and ordered the writings as seemed best at the time, given the circumstances and the materials at hand; more than one conservator also contrived apparati as finding aids to assist the reader in apprehending the whole.
The present curator's mission has been to render the ensemble of these writings in such a manner that it would be responsive to as many different devices as there may be for displaying textual artifacts.
Reading this hypertext
As with many hypertexts, We Descend may be read in more than one way.
The simplest method is to follow the PATH that departs from the word "Begin" on the TITLE page; this procedure will take you through about a third of the Writings in this volume. Click or tap "on>>" to go to the next Writing along the PATH, and "<<back" to retrace your steps. (Note that employing the directional controls on your reading device may have a different effect.) When the "PATH" link appears, you may activate it to see all of the Writings in this sequence.
The PATH "tour" will introduce you to all the persons in We Descend and some of their stories. At its end, an interstitial directory called the LANDING will appear, presenting links to the rest of the Writings, to the INVENTORY (which contains a list of Authors) and to other apparati that will be useful in exploring the archives further.
About links in this edition
In contrast to items in a linkList or the navigationLinks at the bottom of every page, links that appear in the body of a Writing generally operate on a semantic basis — that is, a word or phrase in a different color links to a separate Writing, as you might expect; when you arrive, a phrase will appear highlighted for a moment to help you find your place. Nearby will be a related phrase with a link to help you return from whence you came.
However, where you encounter a link in boldface type, that link works *one-way only*; to return from wherever it leads, you will need to use the directional control on your reading device.